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Dec 4, 2009 02:20 PM

Christmas in London/Hogmanay in Edinburgh

I had no idea finding good places that were open over the holidays would be so difficult. I have some ideas but would love recommendations for a formal Christmas Eve dinner that doesn't surpass 100 GBP per person (excluding alcohol of course) I assume that hotels are the best choice but we would also enjoy a gastropub - What about the Montagu at the former Churchill ( now a Hyatt I think) or the Duke. We arestaying in Blomsbury and I understand transport shuts down around 6 PM Will taxis still be available. We have been in London often but never at Christmas
Also, would like to do tea on Christmas Day in the late afternoon after the Dickens Walk (which we know is fun) any suggestions?
We will go to Sofra for some Middle Eastern goodness one day and have reservations at Rules for my husband's game and Stilton fix.
What about a good Indian choice that is authentic but not over priced like Cinnamon Club or Bombay Brasserie? We would like to take a visiting Amreican friend out for lunch on the 28th or 29th.

Also, any recommendations for not to miss Christmas week activities would be appreciated.

We are on our way to Edinburgh for Hogmanay if anyone wants to weigh in on that

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  1. although we haven't eaten here yet, Wild Honey comes highly recommended, we will be there on the 23rd. They are open on Christmas Eve. You may want to check out their website:

    in addition, i believe that fifteen (jamie oliver's place) is serving a christmas dinner, you check that out.

    as for tea...dont know if they are over Christmas day, the Dorcester is the BEST!

    1. taxis will be available on xmas eve and i think the tube runs until c9pm

      i'm going to marcus wareing at the berkeley on xmas eve - the a la carte is £75 and tasting menu is £90.

      last year i ate at galvins at windows which was lovely (arrive early so you can have a drink in the bar and request a window table for your meal (you can't book them, they are allocated as people arrive)) and the year before went to galvins at baker street which wasn't great - they had run out of various things and the staff were a bit demob happy about getting out asap.

      1 Reply
      1. re: abby d

        Here is the info about transport:

        We spent Hogmanay in Edinburgh last year and it was very good, but you need to book all good and average restaurants early as he city is very busy in the period leading up to NYE. Also check out restaurant opening times The Kitchin was closed for the duration when we were up there; but we had a great lunch at Martin Wishart's (we couldn't get dinner). The new hot spot is "21212", I have not been but reports are good.

        The torchlight procession the day before NYE was fun, the actual NYE celebration around the castle where not that good; a short fireworks display and lots of fun for the 16 years old and had a plentiful supply of illicit alcohol...! However, the city has a fantastic atmosphere in the days leading up to NYE with every restaurant and bar packed out.

      2. Edinburgh is very busy for NY and agree with previous posts booking is preferred.
        Top end restaurants - Martin Wishart, Kitchin, 21212 - may be closed (MW was last NYE but if open is highly recommended)
        Number One at Balmoral Hotel (might be set dinner and more expensive). however its one of the best fine dining in the city.

        Ondine (George IV bridge) is a new fish restaurant currently getting rave reviews in town (chef used to run Rick Steins Padstow restaurant)

        Cheaper places include the Apartment (Tollcross) and Outsider (George IV bridge) which deal with healthy style lighter meals in a lively funky atmosphere.

        For a Edinburgh institution in Chinese the new Lee On chinese restaurant (Tollcross) is cheap as chips and is always busy with local chinese - the decor is a bit old fashioned but for the quality of the food at these prices - you can get set 4 course meal for around £15 per person - its great, if you dont mind the paper tablecloths. Other high end chinese like Kweilin are triple the price but not triple the taste!